This article details the new area of life experience degrees and gives both information about the degrees themselves and about where you can find out more information.
What are Life Experience degrees? LE degrees are meant to represent your skills, knowledge and acumen gained from working in a specific career field in the form of a diploma. They give an indication of prior experience that is usually quite difficult to illustrate, for example, military experience, work experience, prior college, travel, professional development courses, etc. These degrees fit the situation where people might say something along the lines of learning more about a subject through doing it than by learning it in a classroom. LE degrees put everyone on the same footing in this respect. Are they respected? Many companies do not accept life experience degrees as 'official' qualifications because they simply put onto a diploma what a CV can tell them. It makes employers feel like the applicant does not already value their experience and is therefore paying a lot of money to make it 'look better'. The general opinion is that life experience degrees are not earned in the same way as normal degrees and therefore are not 'degrees'. Some employers can see the benefit to them in the sense of being able to better explain the experience of their staff but most people do not look upon them positively. How do I get one? Life experience degrees are unique in that they do not require college or university attendance in order to be gained. They are not degrees online either because what they are based upon has to be proven in front of a panel. You must usually apply to a school and pay their application fee for a panel to review your previous experience. In general, four years of work experience could equate to a four year bachelor degree, but this may be different if you only spent four months training out of the four years. This is because you will only really have four months of college like learning experience.
Where you can get more information
Most of the information about life experience degrees can be found online. Many schools across the USA give information about these degrees too, so it is worth checking out the websites of the following schools:
- Almeda University
- Ashford University
- Belford University Group
- Breyer State University
- Concordia College and University
- Glendale University Group